When times get tought, the savvy get saving

Janis Marshall is a new recruit to the Harrington Brooks team. She works in the custumer services department, helping our debt management clients who need support with their plan. Janis has offered to share some of her own money saving tips with us, in this, her first attempt at blogging.

Janis says…..

In difficult times like these it’s hard to make your money spread as far as it needs to go and believe me; I know how that feels. Having recently seperated from my husband and buying my own property, I’m definatley feeling the pinch. So changes are urgently needed to find ways to save money, without having to give up my life completely!

While I’ve been going through this change I have come across a few areas that can save money and whilst they don’t all benefit me, I thought they may help you so I want to share some hints and tips to help make things a little easier.

Earning interest in your account

Could you be earning money from your current account?

There are great little ways to make your money work for you with your bank accounts. I have a current account and a saving account on which I get a daily interest and each month it is applied to my account.  So a couple of months ago I thought how can I make this work better and like a light switch moment it came to me.  Here is what I do;

  • Firstly I changed all my bills to the last possible date they can be paid.
  • Next I set up a standing order so that when my salary goes in my current account it was transferred to my savings account
  • I then set up a standing order so that the money I needed to pay my bills is transfered to my current account at the very last moment.  For all my other spending I’m careful to transfer just the money I need when i need it.

I find that by checking my accounts online every day really helps me stay on top of things. By doing this I’m earning a few extra pounds interest per month.

Doctor’s Orders – Save On Prescriptions

As the pressure increases and our daily lives getting busier and more stressful there are a lot more of us becoming poorly and having to go to see the doctors.  What does it mean? A prescription for the nice price of £7.65.

Now this cost doesn’t seem that much unless you have more than one item and on a regular basis.  Take me for example, every month I was getting three items on my prescription and an additional 2 every quarter.  Over the year I was spending £321.30 and this was without any addition illness where I may need antibiotics.

So working this out I thought this is ridiculous surely as I’m on this regularly the doctor can give me a longer prescription. So on my next visit I spoke to the doctor and he agreed to do it for 2 months at a time. So now I was spending £183.60 a year. Result I thought, until a colleague at work told me about the annually prescription.  Now I hadn’t heard of this and asked my colleague to explain and it was simply I went home that evening went on to the NHS site and got myself an annual prepaid prescription for the price of £140 saving me a further £43.60.

It just shows what you can save if you just know how to.  Now I don’t need to worry about where the money is coming from for my next prescription, happy days!

P.S. Even if you dont have a lot of medication like me, always check with the chemist before getting your medcine/pills how much it is to buy over the counter should it be available without a perscription.  Sometimes you can save yourself a few pounds and I’m sure you would agree better in your pocket than theirs.

Saving on Travel Insurance

If you are like me, we love the sun and having little breaks away and whilst holidays can be dear enough the insurance soon bumps the prices up especially if you get a flight only. Therefore it can be more benifical finacially to get a yearly insurance policy.

For example:  When I have had a flight only to Europe I have paid £11.99 for each person but by then going to a yearly one I have paid £38.99 and this has been for a family of four, easy savings.

Costs at the moment for a family of four can range from:

Single trip insurance – £10.21 to £165.28
Annual insurance –  £24.60 to £129.95

It pays to shop around, don’t you think?

Another tip about annual traval insurance, is to not to renew as soon as the old policy expires. Get your new policy to start the day before your next trip.

Value in Value added bank accounts

What do we all have these days, yes that’s right a mobile phone and what comes with it? insurance. We also have things like breakdown cover for our cars, especially in winter months, travel insurance and home insurance.  All these things can add up over the month to be quiet costly.  Well there ways that you can save on these, we all these days need a bank account, mostly for having our salary paid into.  If you look around online or on the high street you’ll find that banks are offering a variety of accounts, from your basic to your more exclusive one. Your basic ones don’t charge you and then as the move along you find that you have to pay for the others.

Now when I first heard this I thought – no way am I paying for an account for the bank to have my money sat in their business, but as time has gone on and I have had to make some real life changes I have looked more closely.  It turns out that with my phone insurance, breakdown cover alone I am saving myself a little fortune by taking out one of these bank account, Kerching.

Whats even better I even get additional extras that I wouldn’t have had before, I feel my life getting better all the time.

Better to spend Tesco Clubcard Vocuhers online

I love food, but not so much the shopping for it and that’s why I love having Tesco deliever.  Lazy I know but it intrepts my TV time, anyway thats not what I want to share with you. Like most Tescos shoppers (and listen even if your not) I have a clubcard and each month I wait patiently for my clubcard vouchers to come through so that I can go and treat myself to a piece of clothing or a new CD.  This I thought was great and was more than happy with, but then I was having a coffee with a good friend and we happened to be talking about Tesco’s and thats when he shared his ‘Golden Nugget’.

Now instead of spending his vouchers in store he goes on to the clubcard site and exchanges them for passes to go through the Euro tunnel when he’s going on holiday. The reason why he does this is that he gets more for the value of the voucher and over the last few years has not paid a penny for the euro tunnel and he goes a lot. Theres not just the Euro Tunnel, but days to take you kids to, weekends away, boxes of wine ect and I love that you get more for FREE.  Bring it on is what I say !!